Dumbbell side bends are an isolation exercise that primarily targets the oblique muscles. Oftentimes, exercisers focus on doing regular crunches and other exercises to strengthen the core but do not pay due attention to the oblique muscles. The oblique muscles are a huge part of the core. They are the muscles around our waistline. They help us in bending at the sides and rotating left and right. They also help in stabilizing our bodies. Hence, it is crucial to train them.
Dumbbell side bends are a great exercise to target the oblique muscles. This exercise can be performed with minimum equipment. When done with the right form and technique, it can help a great deal in increasing the strength of the oblique, and the overall strength and stability of the core. In this article, we will discuss how to do dumbbell side bends. We will also discuss the various dumbbell side bends benefits.
How to Do Dumbbell Side Bends Exercise?
It is crucial to perform exercises with good form as that helps in preventing any injuries as well as in getting the maximum benefits out of your workouts. For dumbbell side bends, make sure to use dumbbells of weight that you are comfortable in using. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to do dumbbell side bends with good form.
- To begin, hold a dumbbell in your right hand and stand with your feet hip or shoulder-width apart. Make sure to keep a slight bend in your knees.
- Your posture should be tall with your shoulders over your hips. Maintain a neutral head and neck position throughout the exercise.
- Now, place your left hand behind your head without pulling your head forward. Keep your chin tucked throughout the movement as if you were holding an apple under your chin. Distribute your weight evenly and grip the floor with your feet to create a stable position.
- Now, bring the dumbbell by your side with your palms facing forward. Your arm should be placed vertically with a slight bend at the elbow. Keep your shoulders and hips stable while engaging your core. This is the starting position.
- Now, keeping the rest of your body still, slowly bend your spine to the right so the dumbbell moves down the outside of your leg. Bend until you reach just above your knee.
- Now, squeeze your left oblique and lateral core muscles and slowly, begin to pull your body back to the left side.
- Squeeze your left oblique and pause at the end of the movement.
- Slowly, straighten your spine to set up for another repetition.
- Repeat for the desired number of repetitions and then switch sides.
Perform 3 sets of 10-15 repetitions of dumbbell side bends.
A few things to keep in mind while performing dumbbell side bends include:
- Choose a weight that allows you to maintain good technique and form throughout all sets and repetitions.
- Always pay proper attention to the form.
- Make sure to keep your knees and elbows slightly bent instead of locking them out.
- Make sure to keep your head and neck in a neutral position throughout the exercise.
- Keep your core engaged throughout the movement.
- Make sure to keep your body stable and avoid leaning forward or backwards during the exercise.
- Concentrate on the stretch and contraction of the oblique muscles throughout the movement.
- Take an adequate amount of rest in between sets.
What Are the Benefits of Dumbbell Side Bends Exercise?
Including dumbbell side bends in your workout routine can have several benefits. The various dumbbell side bends benefits include:
1. Increase your lateral strength:
It's effective in targeting the internal oblique muscles as well as the external oblique muscles. Dumbbell side bend workout strengthens the sides of your body. Dumbbell side bend workout also works on the lateral stability of the body.
2. Increase your core strength:
It is effective in increasing your overall core strength. The oblique muscles are a major part of the core that oftentimes get neglected. Strengthening the oblique muscles with db side bends will increase the strength and stability of your core as a whole.
3. Increase spinal mobility:
Db side bends are a core workout that works the spine. When performed with the right form, it helps in increasing spinal mobility, strengthening the lateral flexion of the spine, and improving functional mobility during day-to-day activities.
4. Increase back strength:
Dumbbell side bends are a core exercise. A strong core help in building strong back muscles. It enhances the stability of the back muscles and helps in preventing injuries and protecting the lower back in a more effective way.
5. Define your waistline:
Dumbbell side bends train the oblique muscles that form the sides of our body. Training the oblique muscles will help in shaping and toning the waistline. It also helps in getting rid of the “muffin tops” or that extra layer of fat around the waistline.
6. Versatile exercise:
Dumbbell side bends are an easy and effective core exercise that can be easily performed at home. It is a great exercise for beginners. However, it can be easily modified by using different kinds of weight to increase or decrease the intensity of the exercise to meet any fitness level.
What are the 3 best Alternatives to Dumbbell Side Bends Exercise?
If you’ve gotten bored of dumbbells side bends or are simply not enjoying them anymore, you can try the following dumbbell side bends alternative exercises.
This is a great alternative that can be performed without weights. Since it requires no equipment, you can perform these anywhere.
Cable Oblique Crunches:
This is a great dumbbell side bends alternative that uses cable and weights instead of dumbbells. You can perform cable oblique crunches while standing or kneeling.
Sumo Squat to Oblique Crunch:
This is a dynamic alternative that includes performing squats between standing oblique crunches. It is a very effective oblique workout.
Now that you know all about dumbbell side bends, make sure to add this very simple and effective exercise to your workout routine to burn that belly fat and build strong obliques and a strong core overall. You can perform this exercise at home, at the gym, or on the go, as it requires minimal equipment. Make sure to combine your workouts with good nutrition and an adequate amount of sleep to get the most out of your workouts.
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